Tropical cyclone precipitation (TCP), accounting for some of the most extreme rainfall events, can lead to severe flooding and landslides, which often occur together as compound natural hazards during a tropical cyclone landfall. The impact due to TCP is largely associated with its intensity and spatial extent as the storm approaches landfall. Yet it is not entirely clear how TCP intensity and spatial extent vary from one tropical cyclone to another. In this study, we employ an advanced geostatistical framework to determine the TCP intensity and spatial extent along cyclone tracks for different cyclone categories, defined using the wind speed and tropical cyclone lifetime maximum intensity (LMI) at each track point (“point intensity-LMI”). The results show that when a tropical cyclone with an LMI of a supertyphoon makes landfall and has weakened to tropical storm strength it usually produces the most intense rainfall and covers the largest spatial extent. The total TCP amount estimated using the varying spatial extent helps to determine more accurately the amount of seasonal rainfall that is from tropical cyclones in China. We also determined the rainfall trend from 1951 to 2019 for TCP and found that when compared with the inland stations the historical TCP rainfall trend in those stations near the coastline of China is significantly increasing.
Heavy rainfall caused by tropical cyclones has caused huge direct or indirect economic losses in the coastal areas of China. This impact is particularly significant when the rainfall intensity is high and the area of heavy rainfall is extensive. Here we investigate the rainfall intensity and spatial extent by classifying and comparing the different types of tropical cyclones impacting China with varying intensities. To do this, we group the tropical cyclone tracks of the western North Pacific Ocean during the last seven decades according to the strength of wind speed across the cyclone tracks. We found that the largest areas and heaviest intensities of rainfall occur when a supertyphoon has weakened to a tropical storm at landfall. When considering all tropical cyclones and their rainfall contribution to rainfall over land stations, we found that tropical cyclone rainfall has become heavier in most coastal areas of China.
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